Popular cafe owner and Special Constable awarded for long service

Popular cafe owner and Special Constable awarded for long service

Special Constable Libby Lionetti (left) with Chief Constable Trevor Rodenhurst (Image: Bedfordshire Police)

A Special Constable who has devoted thousands of hours of his own time to community policing and training has been honored by Bedfordshire Police.

Liberato Lionetti, known as Libby to his many customers at La Piazza in St Paul’s Square, was among 19 officers and staff on Thursday (26 January) at the Bedfordshire Police Chief of Police’s long service and commendation ceremony were celebrated.

The event was celebrated outstanding work and marks the long service of 10 police officers and staff who began their careers more than 20 years ago, including Special Constable Lionetti for his dedication to community policing and training police cadets during 19 years of service.

“I always wanted to be a police officer, but my father told me to open a restaurant. So I got a restaurant, but I had a lifelong ambition to join the police force,” Libby said Bedford Independent.

“When I had the opportunity to become a special police officer, I jumped at it and have never looked back. I still have my business, my family and now I’m training cadets. It was the best of both worlds.

Libby said he was honored to be seated alongside the other officers who received awards, saying, “I was honored to be in the same room with them.”

“I train a lot now and am passionate about supporting young cadets in their future – be it in the police force or in another profession.”

Also lauded for their efforts were the detective, who led a fraud investigation into the theft of £1.7million in antiques from a Bedfordshire pensioner, and the team that helped solve an abusive couple for Altogether imprisoned for 35 years.

Investigator Dave Brecknock received a Chief Constable Commendation for his work investigating the theft of dozens of valuable pieces of jade and ivory jewelry over a six-year period. The three ringleaders were sentenced to a total of 16 years in prison.

The team that brought a couple to justice who had sexually and psychologically abused children was also commended. Detective Sergeant Rebecca Breed and Detective Constable Nina Bradbury were commended for their work in securing long prison sentences related to not recent sex offenses, physical abuse and neglect.

Police officer Beth Cavill was also recognized for her life-saving efforts in rescuing an elderly man on his way to work.

Chief Constable Trevor Rodenhurst said: “At a time when the police are under scrutiny it’s been great to celebrate the positive and I want to thank my officers and staff for all they are doing, which is often under the radar remains.

“We’ve heard stories of outstanding contributions to protecting the public and incredible career stories. It was my pleasure to personally thank the people for their hard work and commitment to keeping Bedfordshire safe.”

Officers from the Armed Police Unit, Public Protection Unit, Crime, Intelligence and Community Teams were also honored at the event, while officers and personnel from the Eastern Region Special Operations Unit (ERSOU) and Joint Protection Services were among the long-serving service providers and medals for good conduct .

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